Noah (2014) - 3 stars out of 10
“Noah” certainly is a piece of work. It is like the “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” of Biblical stories. The dichotomy of awesome and terrible is impressive but leaves me seeing the missed potential of this big-budget film. There are few details revealed about the flood in the Bible, but this movie managed to get most of those wrong in lieu of giant, talking rock monsters. Yes, I said rock monsters. Glowing angels who have been enshrouded in stone as punishment. And these aren’t even a small detail. They consume a large chunk of the film, serving as Noah’s protectors as he builds the ark. I can’t make this stuff up (…but apparently Darren Aronofsky can and make millions of dollars off of it)! Aronofsky’s acid trip take on the story of Noah is very artistic but the visual appeal is not worth the sacrilege. I don’t know what I expected from a director whose last big hit was about a schizophrenic, lesbian ballerina, but this movie was a huge letdown to the entire Christian community. I understand the need for artistic license to fill in the many details left out in Genesis, but you can’t just eliminate two of the four wives on the boat so that you can make Ham angry. It is a shame because Russell Crowe, Anthony Hopkins, Jennifer Connelly, and Emma Watson turn in such wonderful performances but this odd interpretation ruins it. If the film had been advertised as a fictional, surrealist retelling without any historical accuracy, I could have been prepared (or more likely would have avoided it); but when you expect the story of Noah, this is an enormous disappointment. The ark is stunning and the soundtrack is perfectly fitting of an epic film. This is paired with awesome acting, cool special effects, and an impossible journey. Yet, when you tie all of these things together with random, surrealist imagery and a bunch of rock monsters, it is easy to see why “Noah” will quickly be forgotten.